Principle 10: Close, positive parent-child relationships are crucial

Research continues to show that one factor that predicts well that a teenager is less likely to experiment with sex is that he or she is close to at least one of the parents. It is not only about the information that is in their heads—it is also about what is in their hearts. Diet experts tell those trying to lose weight never to go to the grocery store hungry. Why would we let our kids go out on dates or out into the confusing world of teen relationships starving for affection and affirmation? A close relationship with a parent sends them to the relational grocery store full and strong.

Such a close relationship also helps them remember that what they do sexually is ultimately about who they love. Do they love you as parents and show that love by honoring what you have taught them? More importantly, do they love Jesus and honor him with obedience? Because what they do affects the relationship with us and with Jesus, we must strive to have a balanced relationship characterized both by love and by expectations linked with accountability and discipline.

Some content taken from HOW AND WHEN TO TELL YOUR KIDS ABOUT SEX, by Stan and Brenna Jones. Copyright © 1993, 2007, 2019. Used by permission of NavPress. All rights reserved. Represented by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. To purchase books in the GOD’S DESIGN FOR SEX book series, go to